Friday, November 6, 2015

2015 Top End Barra Series Round 5.

Hi there,

Not long ago the fifth round of the 2015 Top End Barra Series took place, and here is the story of how it went.
  • It took place at Corroboree Billabong.
  • I fished from Moz's boat.
  • It wasn't easy fishing.
  • All our fish were caught on hard body lures.
Early in the morning I arrived at Moz's, the boat was ready, so we quickly put my stuff in the boat and in the car, and we hit the road.
Destination fishing.

Arriving at Corroboree in the morning is alway a real visual pleasure:

Last stretch of Road before Corroboree Billabong.

Once again we were not disappointed, the scenery was breathtaking.
We launched as quick as we could, and soon found Greg fishing in the morning light.

Greg fishing Corroboree in the morning light.

We had a little chat with him, and a few cast, were both Moz and I got a hit. But this was Greg's spot so we left it to him, and went to a spot that Moz and I fished together four years ago.
As we arrived, we saw a few wallabies just where we wanted to go:

Wallabies on the bank.

Seeing use they hopped away in the bush, and Moz promptly took their place on the bank, while I fished from the boat.
In no time Moz was on, and he landed the first Barramundi of the weekend:

Happy as a man who caught a fish.

It wasn't yet 8:00am and Moz had already caught a 60cm Barramundi. (23.622047 Inches).
By then we become persuaded that this was going to be a cracker of a day, full of nice big fish...
It was going to be a great day, but not for all the fish caught.
As a matter of fact, it was going to be a very long time before we caught another Barramundi.
First we had lunch. Then we caught up with a few other boats, on the bank of the billabong, for a yarn and a few jokes.
Brett who was there, passed a few skewers around, that he had just cooked on his boat, Yummy!

Skewers on the boat.

These were followed by some warm garlic bread, this was luxury fishing for me.
Someone threw a few pieces of bread in the water to see if some little fish would come and eat it.
A kite came and took it:

Greedy kite pinching the fish's bread.

Despite all the fun that we had, it was time to try to get more fish.
So everyone went there own way.

Brett on his way to try to find the Barramundi.

We had opted to troll along the lilies, and I was casting weedless lure at the same time. From the front of the boat, while my trolling rod was at the back. Between two cast I looked at my rod, and saw it suddenly take a sever bent.
I dropped my casting rod on the boat floor, and hurried to catch the other one.
Yes the fish was still on, and was giving an honourable fight.
We identified it as a Barramundi, and it was netted as fast as we could:

A fat Barramundi.

Coming in at 74cm (29.133858 Inches) it was a reasonable size Barramundi, but was surprised me the most, was how fat this fish was. And it did fight like a big guy too.
Like the Barramundi caught by Moz before, it was released to grow a bit more.

One of the thing that anglers and visitors should never forget about Corroboree Billabong, is that it is the home of many, many big crocodiles:

Salt Water crocodile at Corroboree Billabong.

we did see many of them, and they kind of keep you on your toes.
By the end of the afternoon, geese were starting to get back in action:

Flock of geese in flight.

Geese coming to the water in the afternoon.

With the sun going down, Moz cooked a great curry, and it was time to search for a spot to sleep.

Sunset on Corroboree Billabong.

Doing so, we trolled some big lures...
And I got a massive hit, and the line started to peel out of my singing reel.
I was on to a very good fish.
It didn't come to the surface, was fighting deep down in the water column, we were in 20 feet of water.
I started to call it for a massive catfish, and finally it came to the surface just at the side of the boat.
And we saw it...
And Moz shouted: "It is a Metery! A big Metery!"
Yes, an absolutely massive fish it was. But catfish it wasn't, Barramundi it was...
It was too fast for Moz to have any chance to net it.
The big Barramundi sounded straight for the bottom. Moz said: "When they sound like that, it is not a good sign". I said: "Shut Up don't say that now!"
But he was right, first I felt one of the treble pop out, but I was still connected. Then the second one let go and the line went limp.
I had lost, the fish had won.
On closer inspection once I had my lure back in hand, I could see that in fact both trebles had bent.
I still remember it...
Not long after that we found a good spot to anchor the boat and spend the night sleeping.

Early morning saw us trying to snag a fish, mostly by casting weedless in the lilies.
Where I got a small Saratoga, not big, but enough to makes me happy, it was the first in a few year:

Small Saratoga in the morning.

This was a small fish but it was the only one that came aboard during this trip.
We did get hit by a few of them, some much bigger than this one (Because the one that got away is always bigger). But we could not land another one as they are notoriously difficult to hook properly.

But I did get a rather lager yet very skinny Archer Fish:

ArcherFish on the weedless frog.

And this was going to be the last fish from the Sunday.
We did persist the casting, flicking our lures against every structures that we could find.
Sadly to no avail.

We decided to go home in the early afternoon, as we still had a bit of road to do, and the fishing was not getting better.
Yet I still had a great weekend, it was good to be out in the sun breathing some fresh air.
Thank you Moz for inviting me on your boat for the weekend.

And I will remember for a long time that big Barramundi that I lost a Saturday evening in the dark waters of Corroboree Billabong.

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,

Thursday, October 8, 2015

2015 Top End Barra Series Round 4.

Hi there,

Over a month ago was the 4th round of the 2015 Top End Barra Series.
But illness, the visit of a relative from overseas, and starting a new job all got in the way. And now with the round five coming next weekend, I have totally forgotten what it was like in round four.
  • It was in Darwin Harbour.
  • I fished with my good mate Brett.
  • He did catch more and better fish than I.
  • I caught my first flounder on a lure.
I remember Brett picking me up a bit later than usual, simply because this time we were to fish closer from home, and because of the tide.
I love fishing on Darwin Harbour, as it is a beautiful harbour, and it has a great biodiversity.
We launched from a boat ramp that I had never seen before. Where we saw some other participants in the TEBS.

View from the boat ramp on the first morning.

From the ramp we zoomed to a few different places, and finally moved to a spot where we had some fish last year. We decided to stay on the spot until the tide was going to change, hoping that the fish would turn on. They did not really turn on, but still we got a few little hits, and I even finally got my first Barramundi of the weekend, after casting just where Brett was saying that the fish might wait in ambush:

First little Barramundi of the weekend.

This little Barramundi was too small to be give me any point, but it showed us that we were in the right spot and that we could get lucky.
So we tried a bit longer, and this is where I got my first point scorer of the weekend:

Second Barra of the weekend.

This one wasn't a monster, but it made me sure that I was not on a donut for the round, and that was more than enough to make me happy.
But with no more action there, not even a sniff, we decided to move to another spot, not too far away.

There, we arrived once again full of optimism. 
But sadly the fish were not on the same wave length than us, and decided to avoid us as best as they could.
Yet I managed to get a fish that was just the legal size, and who gave me a few more points for the round:

My second pont scorer of the weekend.

As luck would have it, this was to be my last point scorer of the weekend too.
Yet there was still some fun and surprises to be had. Even if all I got in this spot was a smallish Rock Cod, and Brett I think got a few small Barramundi, that were slightly too short to give him any point.

So we called it a day, and decided to go back home, have a rest and come back the following day with a vengeance.

Going back home after the first day.

On the way home we discussed the different options for the next day, wondering how we could improve our chances.
But finally decided to do the same, and the same we did:

Start of day two.

But this time we would get some fish.
Anyway, this was the plan.
Which at first did not really work. So we stopped for a little while, to have a chat with Kieran who was fishing solo:

Kieran in his new boat.

He too found it hard to get some fish, but already had done better than us.
After that we moved to another spot where Brett had got a really good fish last year...
And he did it again!

Brett with is first Barramundi for the round.

Yes this was a good fish. It also meant that from now on, none of us was on the dreaded donut for the round. Our spirits felt suddenly much lighter.
At the same spot, I got my first flounder on a lure.

Little flounder on a lure.

Yes it was rather on the small size, but that was more than enough to make me very happy, and surprised.
First I had never caught a flounder before, and more importantly, I didn't even know that they lived in our waters. This is another proof of the great range of animals living in Darwin harbour.

But with no more fish coming our way, apart a few small Trevally, and maybe a small Catfish, but not sure about that? We decided to quietly go home and call it a day...
On the way, Brett saw some fish boofing on the sand flat, and we went after them.
This is where Brett shined, and I did not much.

Brett second Barramundi.

Brett had just changed his lure to a lighter one, as we were fishing in very shallow water.
And nearly immediately caught a fish.
It didn't took him long to get another one:

Brett last Barramundi of the weekend.

Brett was doing well, and I was taking photo of fish, instead of catching them.

I remember that the sand flat were full of sharks, some even swam very close to the boat, and another one had a go at my lure.

But then the bite stopped in the blink of an eye, and we could not see any boof anymore.
We had just arrived at the right time, and Brett made the best of it.
So this time we really went back to the ramp.

At the ramp I saw a beautiful little crab swimming:

Small crab in the shallow.

We got the boat on the trailer, and once on Terra Firma I tried to put the strap on it...
Well, I am not the best at it... To the extent that I wasn't sure if Brett found it funny or tragic, but the later wouldn't surprise me. As this is what I would have thought myself...

Trying to strap the boat.

It was so bad, that after a few attempt Brett had to do it himself...
But to me it was still a great weekend fishing, with my mind away from the rest of the world.
Thank you Brett for inviting me on your boat.

Sorry that I could not give you more detail about how the round went, but my memory is not the one of a twenty years old anymore...

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,

Saturday, September 26, 2015

The Million Dollar Fish.

Hi there,

Here in the Northern Territory, we have a new fishing competition. Starting in 2015, it might become an annual event.
The competition is called: The Million Dollar Fish.
Because, there is one Barramundi worth just that, a million dollar.

Imagine you go fishing a Sunday morning, and on the Monday, you don't need to go to work again...
Yes it sounds good, but how does it work?

Well pretty simple really, a Barramundi with a tag has been released somewhere in the Northern Territory waters, and if you catch it, you won the million dollar.
And there is a rather nice number of other fish, tagged too, with lesser money prize attached to them.
In fact if you wanted to know more about this competition, just follow this link.

Last night was the official launch of the competition.
An event that I attended of course.
And to my surprise, the Northern Territory Chief Minister, Mr Adam Giles, called my name, and gave me a prize, for being the first to register for the competition.
I really didn't expect it, and it gave a good laugh to a few of my mates that were there too.
One of them, Jason Rogers even took a photo of me receiving my prize, and allowed me to post the photo on this blog, thank you Jason.
And here comes the proof in picture, I was there:

Photo © Jason Rogers.

Yes, I am the little guy under the red arrow. It was in the big room at the Northern Territory Parliament House. I never though that my name would be called in such a prestigious location, that was fun.

So what did I win?
A cool fishing shirt, with the logo of the comp, the one from the NT Tourism Office, and of the other sponsors. A stubby cooler, a Fishing lure, Classic Barra 120 +10 in the Yellow Cherabin colour and a measurement sticker.
Here it is:

Cool prizes.

The competition requires that you catch a real fish, but they also have an online game, that you can play once registered. Which I did, and won a $100.00 gift card at the BCF shop.
I spent the money on a life jacket and a crab pot for my little one. as she kept asking if one day we could go crabbing. Yes she loves eating big mud crab. So now I just have to find someone who will take us on a boat to try to catch one or a few of these crabs.

Now with all these win before the real start of the competition, I just hope that I have not used all of my Mojo, and that I will still be in the running for a tagged fish...
Even if realistically my chances are not that big, with already over 30 000 entrants registered for the competition. Not just people from the Territory, but also from inter-state and overseas...

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,

Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Channel 9 Prize.

Hi there,

Luck was on my side, and I have just won the Channel 9 Catch Of The Day prize.
What is it, you may ask.
Well it is a very simple kind of thing. You send a photograph of a recent fishing catch, in the landscape, or horizontal format to Channel Nine in darwin. With a few words to say what kind of fish it is and how or where you caught it. And if your photo is selected, it goes on television at the end of the news segment in the evening, during the weather forecast.
This is great way for Channel nine to interact with the Northern Territory community.
And in exchange, when your image is selected, you win a prize.
The email address to send your photo is:
Just put Catch of the day in the subject line, and Voilas!
If you live in the Northern Territory of Australia, you should do it, it is fun and if you have kids, this is an easy way to make them proud.

What is the prize?
  • A Channel 9 backpack.
  • A Channel 9 fishing hat.
  • A Channel 9 fishing shirt.
  • A Channel 9 branded Reidy's fishing lure.
  • A first aid kit from St. John Ambulance Australia.
Now, what photograph did I send to win all these cool stuff?
This one:

Queenfish from East Point.

You might remember this photograph and the short video that went with it, from my post called First Try At Kayak Fishing.
This first experience in a kayak had been great, and suddenly had become even better.

And here comes the prize:

The Catch Of The Day Prize, courtesy of Channel 9.

Of course, my favourite in all this is the Reidy's fishing lure:

Channel 9 branded Reidy's fishing lure.

The lure in question is a Judge by Reidy's lure.
I love both Reidy's and this particular lure in their range of offering.
And yes, I am still collecting fishing lures with advertising on them, So I am very happy to have this one. As I didn't had a Reidy's with Channel nine advertising on it before, in my little collection.
This also means that this lure is going directly to the "collectors cabinet", and will never swim.
I can already ear all the people that say that lures are made to catch fish and not to stay dry in a display...

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

St-Croix Baitcaster Review

Hi there,

Here comes the first review I ever wrote about a fishing rod.
Why a review you may then ask...
Well because this is the best fishing rod that I am using at the moment, and as such totally deserved a review.
You might be wondering, what fishing rod are we talking about?
  • It is a St.Croix Premier/PC60MH
  • 6' Med-Heavy Power
  • Fast Action
  • SC''Graphite
  • 10-20lb. 3/8-1oz.

My first ever St.Croix

Yes this is the first St.Croix fishing rod that happened to be mine.
I won it last year as a prize in the 2014 Top End Barra Series, thanks to the generous sponsorship of Fishing and Outdoor World, a great fishing tackle shop in Darwin.
Yes it has been over six months since I won this fishing rod, and I am only doing a review now...
In fact, this is because such a large time frame has allowed me to test, and fish with this rod, in many places and conditions. And to really get a feel for it, something that I would not have had in a shorter amount of time.

I fished with my St.Croix in Darwin Harbour of course, from a boat and land based. Also on the Daly River, the Adelaide River, Bynoe Harbour, Shady Camp and Tommy Cut Creek.
It got me fishes in all of these places, fishing at different time of the year. Sometimes with hard body lures, divers or surface lures, sometimes with soft plastics, casting or trolling. Depending of the days and fishing spots, most of the different scenarios of Barramundi fishing have been meet with this rod. I even used it to fish with vibes lures, and it worked too.

Here it is at Bynoe Harbour:

St.Croix Premier/PC60MH

On my rod I have a Shimano Curado 201I reel, they go well together. It keep the combo relatively light in weight, and I have been able to fish, mostly flicking lures, all day long with it without fatigue.
Yet when a good fish takes your lure, the rod got all the energy necessary to load well and bring home the bacon.
Still you can flick very small soft plastic lures a good distance.

So do I like it?
Yes I do.
It even helped me to get my third biggest Barramundi so far:

My third biggest Barramundi.

At 95cm (37.401575 inches) it is what I personally consider a good Barramundi.
And it was my first good fish on this very fishing rod.

The only thing that bother me a little with this rod, is the size of the line guides. It should not be a problem for most fishermen and fisherwomen, but for me it is just a bit of a nagging concern.
I make big knots on my line, fishing with 30b braid and most of the time 50/60b leader. Slightly larger guides would be a great option. But realistically it is not that big of an issue.

So what are the pro of this rod from my point of view?
  • It is really light and will not get your arm tired half way through the day.
  • It is long enough to obtain great casting distance even with small lures.
  • It is strong enough to put the breaks on a good angry fish.
  • It has an excellent finish.
  • It is a St.Croix.

Fishing a TopEnd creek with my St.Croix.

Now would I recommend this rod to any of my fishing buddies?
Yes, without any hesitation, it has become my go to fishing rod, and now most of my mates have seen me use it. Some of them have even tried it, and loved it.

So I guess that the only problem about it really, is that I wanted a St.Croix for a long time and now I would love to have a few of them...

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

First Try At Kayak Fishing

Hi there,

Yes last weekend, I had my first real try at fishing from a kayak.
And I loved it.
  • I fished from a Hobie Kayak.
  • The kayak belong to my friend Aaron.
  • We fished at East Point.
  • I used a DUO lure.
  • I made a short video about it.
  • It is a very exciting form of fishing.
Aaron had sent me a message, asking me if I wanted to go fishing from one of his kayak the following day. He just had a great morning fishing, and wanted to do it again the next day.
I love fishing, yet I was not too sure about doing it from a kayak. Above waters in which crocodiles and sharks are swimming.
Yet it is a long time since I had some fresh smoked fish, and the idea of it made me say yes.
We arranged to meet at 6:30 am at East Point, one of my favourite land based fishing spot in Darwin. With the day rising and the cold of the dry season on us, (it was actually on the coldest night/morning of the year so far). We started to get the two kayak ready, loaded with all the fishing gear that we would need, for just a quick trip on the water.
And just on sunrise we launched the two small embarkations, in direction of the fishing grounds.

Kayaking at sunrise.

This was at the same time beautiful and relaxing, but with a tiny edge of nervousness. I have many times seen crocodiles around there, and I was not overtly comfortable entering their territory, and being so close to the water at the same time.

Close to the water.

Fishing from the rocks on the water edge is one thing. But being literally sitting a few centimetres above it, is another.
Aaron told me that as soon as I would get a fish, I would be alright and forget all about it.
Well, it didn't take long, 19 minutes after launch, I was battling a Queenfish that had taken my lure. I know that it was only 19 minutes after launch, because I had turned my video camera on just as we were launching, and on the movie, the hit came in at 19 minutes on the dot.

We were fishing in close proximity of each other, as they said that there is safety in numbers.
When we saw a school of Queenfish, following and trying to take hold of Aaron lure.
As we both screamed about it, I immediately casted my lure toward the watery commotion and reeled in as fast as I could. To absolutely no results. Aaron did a second cast, and as he was retrieving his lure at high speed, I casted too. Just as I had casted my lure, who was still flying in the air, I saw once again the Queenfish having a go at his lure, and this time very close to his kayak.
I could only exclaim with a big Ah! Thinking that I may have now casted my lure way too far from the school of hungry fish to stand any chances to entice one of them to chew on my offering.
Yet, I still tried to get my lure in as fast as I could. And not far from the kayak, I first saw a fin tail, a bit of a boil in the water, and I could not reel in my lure anymore, it was being taken away from me at great speed.
I was on!

The fish didn't take long to make a nice little jump, and then I knew for sure that it was a Queenfish.

I think that I must have then started to shout and screamed like an over excited kid. Who has never fished before and has just caught his first fish ever.
Yes, sometimes when fishing, I can act a bit like a happy child...

Bringing in the Queenfish.

On the kayak in the background was Tristan, who had just arrived in time to see that the fish were there. This Queenfish wasn't one of the biggest ones. But it was healthy and gave a very good account of himself. Once it was near the kayak I was afraid that it would dive under and resurface on the other side. Luckily, it didn't happen. The little Queenfish was boated, photographed, and released.
Released, when I wanted to eat some fresh fish?
Well yes, it started so well, that I decided to wait for the next fish before I kept one...
Will I ever learn?
That was the only fish I caught on the day, and if I want to eat some fish this week, I will have to eat some frozen one...

Anyway, here is my little fish:

Queenfish caught from the kayak.

Yes, this is definitively a very exciting form of fishing, where you are in very close contact with mother nature. I was starting to love that.

Aaron for his part got a nice little Trevally, which he released too.

Aaron fishing from his kayak on Darwin harbour.

Aaron has now written a few magazine article about fishing from a kayak, and is a great advocate about it. His passion for it is contagious, and he has even talked about it on the local radio.
Thank you Aaron for inviting me to fish from one of your kayak, this was a great morning session.

One of the funny thing about this fishing trip, is that in his messages Aaron had told me to take some popper and some skipping lure or stick bait.
Now, I have some popper, but don't have any skipping lures or stick bait. So what did I take with me?
A walk the dog lure, and used it as a stick bait, reeling it in very fast.
And it worked.
I had already caught smaller queenfish with that very lure, but using it as it should be, walking the dog. Just a bit faster than normal, but still walking the dog style. In fact I have caught Barramundi, Trevally, and Queenfish on this lure so far, so I really like it.
This is what it look like:

The DUO Realis Pencil 110.

And because you have been reading so far in this post, now you can see the little video of our morning fishing, from the kayak, like if you were seated in it:

Fishing from the kayak.

Yes, it is a short film of only four minutes, And I am definitively no Stanley Kubrick, I need to make a lot of progress in the video department, I know. But it is four minutes of angling bliss.
It would have been better if I had a film with more fishes in it.
So you would all get excited and would want to go and fish from a kayak too.

But hey,
it could be worse.
Have a good day,

Saturday, July 4, 2015

The Hooked-Up Boat Hire

Hi there,

I don't know if you remember, but I was very lucky to win a Hooked-Up Boat Hire for a full weekend.
Thanks to last year FFF Seadogs fishing competition. And yes, I am doing the comp again this year!

How was it?
You mean, the full weekend that I was able to spend fishing on a great boat?
It was really good, even if the fish played hard to get. But after all it is called fishing, not scooping...

So what did the boat look like?
It looked like that:

Brett launching the boat at Bynoe Harbour.

Yes, I had invited Brett to fish with me for the weekend.
Why Brett, who has a boat, some of you may ask...
Well, because Brett had been the first member of the FFF fishing forum to invite me to fish from his boat, a few years ago. And had since regularly invited me. So to me it was a way of saying thank you, for once that I was able to invite someone on a boat.
We picked up the boat in the afternoon of the Friday, which was great. Thank you to Peter the boss of Hooked-Up Boat Hire, for the great service and being so easy to deal with. The guy had a great Territorian attitude.

So to Bynoe we went, and the plan was to first chase some Mackerels and maybe some Tuna. Then a few Jewfish at the end of the day. To finish with some Barramundi on the Sunday, before going back to civilisation. What a plan! 
And this was our plan B. Because originally, we had made the plan to go for some big Barramundi at the mouth of the South Alligator river, where I have never been yet, to catch the big mamas.
But the forecast was bad, too much wind, so we decided on Bynoe, as another great plan.
Well, someone somewhere must have told the fish about it...
Because we could not find a single Tuna. 
One medium sized Mackerel hit Brett lure, and spat it, so no Mackerel in the boat...
By mid afternoon, it seemed a bit bleak and we started to wonder if we would find any fish...
Plan C: catch some reef fish...
Well, at the first drop, Brett got a good Golden snapper, that went straight to the esky.
That was it, we had found the fish!
Or so we thought...
Because after that, we got a few smaller fish, but nothing big enough to keep.

It was time then to try for the Jewfish part of plan B, and we sailed toward a jewfish spot.
Once again, first drop and Brett is on:

Brett fighting a strong fish.

I got excited, even a bit more than Brett who was fighting this obviously very strong fish.
I should have asked myself why that, but no, I did not...
And when he finally got the fish at the boat, I knew why: it was a big Catfish. Now I know that in some parts of the world, people actively target big Catfish. But here in the Northern Territory, they are more seen as a pest than anything else... To the extend that many fishermen/women, don't even want them in their boat. And this is what happened to this one, it was released at the side of the boat.
Brett, got another one, and started to tease me that I didn't get anything.
Then I got a nice little cod, which would have been perfect size to eat, but I released it. Too impatient to eat this big jewfish that I was going to catch...
What was that old saying? Don't count your chicken before you eggs have hatched, or something like that...
Well, I should have listen to common sense, and after the day we just had, I should have kept that cod...
Here comes the tale of my big Jewfish...
I had just dropped my bait to the bottom, less than five seconds on the floor of the ocean, when I started to feel a light tap on my line. I waited for a full 2 second before the rod buckled on itself and the line started to peel at great rate from my reel. Beauty I was on to a good fish!
But it didn't fight at the botton, it went straight for the surface. Brett had told me about Jewfish going directly on the anchor rope, but I was safe about this one, as we didn't put any anchor out. We were using the electric motor to keep us on the spot.
Well where did this fish go then? 
You have probably guessed by now, in about three second after being hooked, the fish had gone from the depths, to around the electric motor...
Brett didn't know if he should laugh or throw me overboard for letting such a rookie mistake happen. I quietly suggested that laughing seemed a much better thing to do, from my point of view...
Any way, Brett raised the electric motor got my line untangled, and the fish was still on and started to pull again.
Taking me all around the boat, this time I put my fishing rod deep under the water to avoid the outboard on the other side of the boat. And danced with this fish to finally find myself where it had all started a few minutes earlier. And the fish was still taking some good runs. But finally, I got it near the surface, and I saw it in all its glory. A magnificent Catfish was giving me a hard time at the end of my line, not a Jewfish...
I un-hooked it, tried to not look too disappointed, as all along I had thought that it was a Jewfish.
Put another bait on and waited patiently.
The sun was setting, and it was a beautiful evening:

Sunset on Bynoe Harbour.

A beautiful evening, but with I think just one more of these big Catfish for Brett, and nothing at all for me.
It was time to find a creek to moor the boat for the night, and to get some food cooking.
Two big steak in the frypan, a pasta salad, and that was done.
I was more than exhausted and fell asleep in less time than it takes me to write it.
After sleeping like a log all night long, I finally woke up, with the day rising, and started to flick a surface lure in the semi obscurity, but alas for no success.

Rising day in a Bynoe Harbour's creek.

We moved to another little creek, where Brett had fished with success in the past.
And in this new creek, we did find some Barramundi.
First Brett got one from a snag, on a soft plastic lure.
I promptly changed from my hard body lure, to a soft plastic similar to the one Brett was using.
And started to miss some fish... While Brett got another one.
Brett remarked that every time that a Barramundi was hitting my lure, I was trying to set the hook, like if I was Trout fishing. He showed me a better technic for Barramundi. Old habit are sometimes hard too lose, but I tried as best as I could.
Finally I got one, this was the third fish to come exactly from the same snag.

My first Barramundi of the weekend.

Sadly none of them were big enough to keep. 
Still it was great fun, and we finally started to get some action.
We joked about the fact that this is where we should have come on the first day. But how would have we been able to know that?
This was a great little creek, with some very calm water, and a beautiful morning light.

Little creek with view on Bynoe Harbour.

In the end, we got out of the creek, and just fished the harbour flats.
In some spot, we could see the Barramundi and were casting to them. But they spook very easily and were hard to fool. I changed lure, and put on my favourite walk the dog lure, the DUO Realis Pencil, and this time I used a black one, instead of the white one that I usually use.
It worked very well, first because it gave me a bit more casting distance than the soft plastic lure that I was using previously, and second because it caught me two other Barramundi.

Barramuni on top water lure.

These fish were a bit better than the first one I got, and in retrospect, I should have kept one, but they all went back in the water. The positive about it, is that they should be bigger the next time that we meet, says my optimist side.

At one point, I flicked my lure against some rocks on the shore, and started to bring it back toward me, when a small Mangrove Jack had a go at it. And he did try to hit it a few time and followed the lure mid way to the boat. Brett said, cast in the same spot, he might try again and maybe you will get it this time. 
So I did just that and dropped my lure in roughly the same spot, and as soon as I started to impart a bit of action to it, we saw a nice bow wave moving from the left in direct line for my lure.
How exciting! Well it is exciting until the head of a little crocodile comes up out of the water while still moving in the direction of the lure.
So I speeded up my retrieve to make sure that he would not chomp on it. After all I like this lure.
The young crocodile tried to race it to the boat.
He then looked at us for a little while before calmly swimming back to its hiding spot near the rocky shore.
At least it gave me a great opportunity to photograph it:

Juvenile Salt Water crocodile.

Cute as a button, a crocodile button.

The baby crocodile going back to his home.

Yes I know, that is a lot of photos for a small crocodile. But that was so exciting to see it coming so close to us, and not being afraid, maybe the insouciance of youth was at play there.
It is actually the first time that I got to see a small crocodile that was so confident. I just hoped that mama croc was not too close.

So we moved a bit further away.
And I got another small Barra on the surface lure:

Barramundi on the DUO Realis Pencil 110.

I think that my favourite way to catch a Barramuni is on a surface lure.
The boof, of the feeding Barramundi, is really something to see.

We saw a small group of Threadfin Salmon cruising the flat, Brett casted a bit in front of them, and reeled his lure past them. They all followed, one had a go at it but missed, a second one took the opportunity and smashed the lure, Brett was on:

Brett and the Threadfin Salmon

It was definitively of the right size to eat, but was released too.

By now it was nearly midday, and we wanted to be back in the city early, so we made our way back to the ramp, and to Darwin.

Boat on the ramp, ready to go back home.

I would like to thank the FFF for organising the Seadogs fishing competition, and Hooked-Up Boat Hire for being such a generous sponsor.
I had a really good weekend on their boat, and their service is very friendly. I would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone.

It was a great weekend, even if I am yet to see the mouth of the South Alligator River.

But hey, it could be worse.
Have a good day,